This unit is an introduction to structures and structural systems designed for students without a background in engineering. Concepts of structural principles will be discussed by drawing on examples in residential and low-rise construction. Various forms of structural systems for timber, reinforced concrete and steel construction will be investigated.

Unit details

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Unit code:


NBC1101 - Maths for Builders

NBC1103 - Basic Structural Mechanics

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:
  1. Exemplify fundamental structural design principles, key structural elements and types, as well as basic construction materials and practices across a range of building types and conditions;  
  2. Evaluate the effects of loads and actions on the behaviour of structural systems and articulate the choice of structural system in relation to applied loads and building types;  
  3. Articulate a sound theoretical background in statics, mechanics and structural analysis for understanding the choice of materials and structural systems;  
  4. Interpret physical building and structural configurations in terms of real materials, actual constraints, and practical limitations which govern the behaviour of structures; and  
  5. Exemplify effective communication with a range of skilled professionals, including architects and engineers.  


The tests focus on the individual student's ability to demonstrate an understanding of the specialist body of knowledge within the built environment discipline and to apply established structural principles to some simple construction problems. The assignment may be undertaken by groups, and assesses the students' ability to solve problems and to interact in a team situation.
Assessment type Description Grade
Test In-Class Test 1 10%
Test In-Class Test 2 20%
Assignment One (1) Team Case Study report submitted in two parts. Part 1 25% Part 2 35% 60%
Presentation Oral Presentation 10%

Where to next?

As part of a course

This unit is studied as part of the following courses. Refer to the course page for information on how to apply for the course.

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